Population Statistic: Read. React. Repeat.
Monday, January 22, 2021

How has Sarbanes-Oxley changed corporate America? From recent indications, it’s changed the nature of the chief financial officer position:

SarbOx has forced CFOs to spend nearly a third of their time on IT systems, paperwork, and tedious board inquiries rather than on the big picture, say headhunters and former executives. That’s in addition to typical responsibilities like communicating with Wall Street and dealing with creditors…

As a result of this short-term mentality, CFOs are no longer perceived as stars on the boardroom bench waiting to become CEO. Rather, companies want troubleshooters. “The job has been pushed back to block-and-tackle rather than dipsy-doodle,” is how J. Michael Cook, former CEO of Deloitte & Touche, describes the transition from strategic thinker to high-profile bookkeeper.

Who goes to business school to attain the position of Chief Beancounter? But there is a solution:

Some companies are trying to reinvigorate the CFO job by creating a new position: the chief accounting officer, equipped to handle the technical aspects of finance. Microsoft and Comcast recently hired star CFOs by pairing them with highly regarded CAOs. “People getting in now should have high ambitions,” says [CFO Forum director Jonathan] Karpoff. “I expect to see CFOs becoming important again.”

Of course, this comes off as just another bitch session about SarbOx forcing execs to actually work. This one comes on the same day that the regulatory measure is blamed for diminishing New York as a preferred global business financial center. It’s amazing that it hasn’t been repealed yet; maybe evidence that it’s actually helping the economy is leaking out.

by Costa Tsiokos, Mon 01/22/2007 11:46:55 PM
Category: Business | Permalink | Feedback

OK, I think it’s official: The Grey Lady has a distinct fixation on pornography.

Witness: It closed out 2006 with a look at the aging demographics of adult performers (which somehow threw me for a loop when it described a graying female actor’s hairdo as a chignon). Then, it reported on the financial potential of pay-per-view porn in hotel rooms, obviously laying on a thin veneer of business-news merit to mask its curious preoccupation.

And today, the smut parade continues, with this hard-hitting report on the cosmetic challenges presented by the onset of the high-definition video format in the adult film industry.

Call me crazy, but I think there’s a directive at New York Times Co. to push the porn as a way of pushing print copies and pageviews.

Anyway, on to the obligatory pertinent snippet:

Jesse Jane, one of the industry’s biggest stars, plans to go under the knife next month to deal with one side effect of high-definition. The images are so clear that Ms. Jane’s breast implants, from an operation six years ago, can be seen bulging oddly on screen.

“I’m having my breasts redone because of HD,” she said.

The stretch marks on Ms. Jane from seven years ago when she gave birth to her son are also more apparent. But she deals with those blemishes in a simpler way: by liberal use of tanning spray.

Who figured hi-def TV would be a boon to plastic surgeons and makeup manufacturers?

Incidentally, this article mentions Pirates, the landmark first high-definition porn flick that was filmed in my former hometown of St. Petersburg, Florida. And wouldn’t you know it: One of my original sources for that story was, yes, the New York Times…

by Costa Tsiokos, Mon 01/22/2007 11:24:35 PM
Category: Publishing, Tech, Movies | Permalink | Feedback

i see black coaches
The Bears cruised their way in, while the Colts got there in dramatic fashion.

And, of course, the chief subplot in the Chicago-Indianapolis matchup in Super Bowl XLI will be the arrival of a black head coach on the Super sidelines — one on each sideline, in fact.

Good for Lovie Smith and Tony Dungy for reaching the NFL’s big show. But I can’t help but think that, taking into account the league’s history vis-a-vis black coaches (namely, regarding one Fritz Pollard), this historic moment should have already happened, years ago. Better late than never, I guess.

by Costa Tsiokos, Mon 01/22/2007 08:52:36 AM
Category: Football | Permalink | Feedback